Local Man Reportedly Drowns While Fishing

OCEAN CITY – An Ocean City man, well known around the resort community, drowned last Saturday night while fishing at a popular beach and public park at the foot of Old Bridge Rd. and Sinepuxent Bay in West Ocean City.

Robert Nickel, 55, of Ocean City, was recovered in the Sinepuxent Bay near the end of Old Bridge Rd. in an area fondly called Stinky Beach last Saturday evening. Nickel was reportedly fishing at the time when he entered the water and either slipped off the rocks and into the swirling current or stepped in a deep hole. It remains a possibility some unknown medical condition, possibly a heart attack, contributed to his drowning, according to Sgt. Tim Keen of the Worcester County Bureau of Investigation (WCBI).

“We believe he fell in the water and got in trouble and that a medical condition might have had something to do with it,” he said “He has been transported to the Medical Examiner’s Office in Baltimore for a complete autopsy and the investigation is ongoing.”

The Coast Guard responded and pulled Nickel from the water and he was quickly transported to Atlantic General Hospital, but he could not be resuscitated and died. Nickel was known to frequently fish at Stinky Beach and other areas in and around the resort area.

The popular beach, renamed Homer Gudelsky Park a few years ago when it became a Worcester County-owned and operated park, has been known to locals for decades as Stinky Beach. It is a popular site for fishing, playing with dogs and other beach-related activities, but its rocky shoreline and often treacherous currents make it not suitable for swimming.  

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